Energy Efficient Heating Solutions for Your Home | Checkatrade
Request a quote
Review a Trade

Have you completed a project recently? Let your tradesperson know how they did.

Advice Centre

Get Inspired! Check the latest industry expertise and read insider tips from our vetted tradespeople.

Search For A Trade

We interview and vet all our tradespeople to ensure they meet our high standards.

Join Checkatrade

Join us and benefit from the millions of potential customers who use Checkatrade to find reliable tradespeople.

Advice Centre

Grow your business! Check out top tips and expert advice for boosting your reputation online.

Login To Your Account

Edit your profile, view callback requests and ask for feedback from customers.

Energy efficient heating solutions for your home

With the Government's Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS) offering funding for air source heat pumps, ground source heat pumps, and biomass boilers, now is the perfect time to future-proof your home. In this blog, we break down each energy-efficient heating solution with pros, cons, and costs.

With energy costs continuing to rise, it’s important to understand the best energy-efficient heating solutions available to you, now more than ever.

Although wearing warmer clothes and turning off your lights will help, sitting in the dark in your knitwear isn’t for everyone. That’s why this article is going to discuss the best energy-efficient heating solutions and costs.

Keep reading for our expert advice on efficiently heating your house this winter. And if you’re looking for tips and tricks on making your whole house more cost-effective, read our guide: How to make your home more energy efficient.

What kind of energy-efficient heating systems are there?

In this guide, we’ll look at the types of energy-efficient heating available, including their costs, pros and cons.

It’s worth noting how low-carbon fuel options are the best solutions for households looking to future-proof their homes. When you take into account how over half the UK’s energy bills are due to heating our homes and water, systems that make heating more efficient and/or manageable are essential. This will also reduce your carbon footprint and monthly energy bills.

In this next section, we will look at each energy-efficient heating solution in detail.

Air source heat pumps

This low-carbon technology is a fantastic alternative to oil, LPG and gas. These units not only save energy and reduce your carbon footprint, but they’re relatively easy to install.

There are two options to choose from; air-to-air and air-to-water pumps.

Air-to-air heat pumps absorb the outside air and transfer it into your home via a fan system.

Air-to-water pumps absorb outside air and transfer it via your central heating system to heat your hot water, radiators and underfloor heating (sometimes all three!).

The main downside to an air source heat pump is reduced efficiency below zero degrees Celsius. You will need to have an already well-insulated home when installing an air source heat pump. They’re also a little pricey to install. For example, most units will set you back around £6,000 – £8,000 (supply only). However, this is greatly reduced if you qualify for the £7,500 Boiler Upgrade Scheme (BUS).

Read our air source heat pump cost guide for more information. 

Air source heat pump installation costs
See the tradespeople we've checked and recommend for your job

Ground source heat pumps

With high-efficiency rates and low running costs, ground source heat pumps are excellent options for homeowners looking for greener heating alternatives. These units work by utilising the ground’s consistent temperature to heat your home or water (or both).

Although they’re one of the better units on the market in terms of effectiveness, they’re expensive to install. The cost to install a 4-12kW heat pump is, on average, £14,000 (supply and installation).

However, if you’re eligible for the Boiler Upgrade Scheme, you can secure £7,500 in government funding to offset the overheads. Simply apply through the government website to see your eligibility.

Read our guide: How much does a ground source heat pump cost? for more information.

Ground source heat pump cost

Biomass boilers

Biomass boilers are one of the best energy-efficient heating solutions. The word ‘biomass’ simply refers to any organic matter used to create energy, for example, everyday animal matter, different agricultural crops, and other industrial by-products that are easily burned or turned into liquid to generate electricity.

However, like most energy-generating products, biomass isn’t perfect. Although it’s renewable, using biomass energy plants comes with its own set of pros and cons. For example, bioenergy is a reliable type of renewable energy due to its wide availability, and harvesting biomass for electricity means reducing the waste going to landfill. But, it’s also expensive to gather, transport, and store, meaning it requires more land space to produce.

That said, the pros and cons depend on the type of biomass collected and how it’s used, which is why it’s worth finding out the source of your biomass fuel before committing to this greener boiler alternative. It’s also worth noting that burning these fuels doesn’t eradicate the carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxides, or volatile organic compounds being released into the atmosphere, so make sure it’s offset by the boiler’s lifecycle journey and fuel source.

Biomass boilers are also part of the BUS scheme, and the government is offering £5,000 off the cost and installation of a biomass boiler.

See the tradespeople we've checked and recommend for your job

Energy efficient electric heating

If you currently have electric heating, consider upgrading to a more energy-efficient solution to offset the rising fuel costs.

Although electric heaters are notoriously expensive compared to their gas counterparts, they’ve come a long way in terms of technology and efficiency in recent years. Newer storage heaters and electric radiators are equipped with various smart solutions for controlling the amount of heat they produce and waste.

For example, smart control systems let homeowners heat individual rooms instead of the whole house. Plus, accurate thermostats allow you to maintain an even temperature 24 hours a day. They also let you change times and settings (even when you’re not at home) and turn your heating on and off via an app on your phone. Some technology can also detect open windows.

Alternative solutions to efficiently heating your home

Upgrade your boiler

Consider upgrading or replacing your current boiler with one that has a higher energy rating. The government is looking to ban gas boilers in new builds by 2025; however, that doesn’t mean your current gas boiler is going the way of the dodo. There will be a grace period. Even so, it’s worth looking at alternatives while the grants are available to you. Even a combi or electric boiler might make more sense if you pick the right model. Just be sure to speak to a professional who’ll be able to advise you on the best course of action.

If you’re happy with your current boiler, then consider servicing it before the winter to make sure it’s up to spec and doesn’t conk out on you mid-snowstorm. Our boiler service cost guide has everything you need to know about how much this will set you back. You can expect to pay around £100 for a gas boiler service.

upgrading boiler for energy efficient heating solutions this winter

Install solar water heating panels

For a clean and efficient water heating alternative, consider installing thermal solar panels on your roof. There are two types of solar water heating systems available on the market: active and passive. Both use the sun to convert energy to hot water, so it helps if you live in a sunny area. However, passive solar systems rely on the design of your building and therefore aren’t as popular as their active alternatives.

The average cost to install solar water heating panels is £4,500. However, this will vary depending on a number of factors, such as whether you need scaffolding or whether you’re using your existing gas boiler to heat your water.

Read our following article for further information on the energy grants available in 2022.

Did you find this blog on the best energy-efficient heating solutions useful? Leave a comment to let us know or check out our blog for more expert advice, top tips and cost guides.

See the tradespeople we've checked and recommend for your job

Tell us what you think

Please note, you cannot leave a review, or contact a tradesperson by commenting.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

What others think of this article:

No comments yet!

Also in this project

Air source heat pump cost guide

If you’re looking for a clean way to heat your home whilst saving money on your energy bills, then an air source heat pump could be for you. Keep reading to find out more about the average air sourc...

Read more
EPC cost guide

If you’re selling your property or renting one out, you’ll need an Energy Performance Certificate to show to prospective buyers or tenants – otherwise known as an EPC. Let’s take a look at exa...

Read more
Gas vs electric heat cost – which is cheaper?

Find out what to look out for when comparing gas vs electric heat cost to make sure you choose the right energy for your home....

Read more
Retrofit assessor cost

If you’re looking to improve the energy efficiency of your home, you’ll want to start by hiring a retrofit assessor to carry out an assessment of the property. In this guide, we look at the averag...

Read more